Despite leaving the confectionery industry for another career, Paul McMahon’s heart and soul remained behind the candy counter. His six-year stint as a marketer at Hebert Candies in Shrewsbury, Mass., had left an indelible sweet mark on the man. During the next 14 years while he worked in the security industry, McMahon kept a briefcase tucked away with a growing assortment of notes and ideas for a chocolate business. Moreover, he’d arrive for any visit, birthday or holiday with chocolates in hand, making people smile with delight.
As a food TV addict, McMahon was inspired watching programs such as Unwrapped, as well as Ina Garten’s The Barefoot Contessa and Emeril Lagasse’s shows.
While vacationing around the United States, Canada and Europe with his wife, Michelle, and two boys, he’d insist on visits to all the local candy and fudge shops; and from all those visits gathered more inspiration for the future.
The future became the present when McMahon left his long-time job at the start of 2011 and decided to make a go of a career in the chocolate business. An entrepreneur at heart, he dusted off the briefcase full of ideas and created a business, The Happy Chocolatier, and his signature confections line, Cubze.
Cubzeare unique, one-inch, cubeshaped, hand-wrapped truffles that include an inspirational message about happiness. Hand-made with highquality ingredients, they are available in a delicious variety of flavors such as cappuccino, chocolate, chocolate mint,Chocolate walnut, cookies & cream, cranberry walnut, peanut butter, maple and pumpkin spice, coated in either milk or dark chocolate.
McMahon’s idea is that people can enjoy a single piece or share the happiness by giving the chocolate as a gift. His flagship store in Acton, Mass., not only carries Cubze, and many other delectable chocolates, but also offers a selection of ice cream flavors complementary to chocolate. Thus, each cone or cup is topped with a piece of rich milk chocolate.
Customers looking for something extraordinary can order a Cubze Parfaits — ice cream layered with a favorite Cubze flavor and garnished with whipped cream and a chocolate drop.
For more information, visit www.thehappychocolatier.com.
If you were stranded on a deserted island with only one kind of candy, what would it be?
My Cubze, of course.
What’s the last cool thing you saw online?
A photo essay of “sensational summer sunsets.”
When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Skinny. Of course, that didn’t pan out. So, I am comforted by the thought that no one would ever believe that a skinny chocolatier enjoys his own chocolates.
What issues concern you most about the confectionery industry and why?
We need to make cocoa growing sustainable through improved agricultural practices, social development and making the businesses profi table for local communities.
What’s the last book you read?
The Chocolate Warsby Deborah Cadbury
What is your pet peeve?
If given the chance to choose anyone, whom would you like to collaborate with?
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Think. Smile. Be nice to everyone you meet. (From one of my uncles).
What excites you most about your job?
Creating confections that truly make people happy — because they enjoy eating them and sharing them.